New speed indicators to be installed by schools
by BRIAN NADIG
Digital speed indicator signs will be installed on main thoroughfares near Edgebrook, Garvy, Immaculate Conception and Saint Juliana schools, according to Alderman Anthony Napolitano (41st).
The signs are designed to show drivers the speed of their vehicle in an effort to get motorists to obey the posted speed limit, Napolitano said. Unlike speed cameras, the signs do not record the license plates, but provide information on the total number of speeding vehicles each day, he said.
When drivers see how fast they are traveling, they may remember to drive more carefully the next time they travel that roadway, Napolitano said. "You’re either going to slow down or you’re not. Hopefully this brings relief," he said.
Crews have started to install the signs in October.
A grant from Cook County Commissioner Bridge Gainer (D-10) is paying for the southbound and northbound signs on Central Avenue near Edgebrook School, 6525 N. Hiawatha Ave., while 41st Ward discretionary funds are being used for the signs on Touhy Avenue near Saint Juliana School, 7400 W. Touhy Ave., Foster Avenue near Garvy School, 5225 W. Oak Park Ave., and Talcott Avenue near Immaculate Conception School, 7263 W. Talcott Ave., according to Napolitano’s chief of staff Chris Vittorio. The signs are estimated to cost about $10,000 each.
In addition, a study is being conducted for the possible placement of speed cameras near Saint Juliana. "They’re flying, 60 mph-plus (on Touhy)," Napolitano said.
Many residents voiced support for cameras on Touhy during a community meeting about 1 1/2 years ago, as children from both Ebinger and Saint Juliana schools cross that street, Napolitano said. However, the project was delayed due to concerns about how the cameras were being operated throughout the city and the process by which drivers could challenge tickets, he said.
There are no immediate plans for speed cameras near the other schools, but if the need were to arise, a community meeting to gather input from residents would be held prior to any decision, Napolitano said.